Here’s How Knicks’ Derrick Rose Finished Ahead of LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, and James Harden in MVP Voting

Published 06/09/2021, 1:38 AM EDT
May 30, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; New York Knicks guard Derrick Rose (4) tries to score behind guard Kevin Huerter (3) during the first half in game four in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports


Denver Nuggets Nikola Jokic finally received his much-deserved MVP award this season. Most players on the list of MVP contenders didn’t come off as surprising, such as Stephen Curry, Joel Embiid, and Giannis Antetokounmpo. But how did Derrick Rose make it to the list? The New York Knicks veteran landed ahead of even LeBron James, James Harden, and Kawhi Leonard in the MVP awaiting.

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Derrick Rose ahead of LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard?

Nikola Jokic got 91 of the 100 first-place votes from the media, Curry had 5, Chris Paul had 2, and Giannis, Embiid, and Rose picked up 1. However, Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press made everyone’s doubts clear about the one vote that Rose received.

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As per him, that vote for Derrick Rose was a consensus fan vote and did not come from the media. This is something that has been included in the voting process since 2010. Rose averaged 14.7 points, 4.2 assists, 2.6 rebounds in the 2020-21 season and was declared MVP last in 2011. In fact, he was the youngest player to achieve this feat back when he was 22-years-old.

Rose wasn’t the only one on the New York Knicks team who received some from love. Julius Randle, who is the Most Improved Player, earned a couple of third, fourth, and fifth place votes as well.

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Rose made an impact on the Knicks

This season, the Knicks stunned everyone by making it to the playoffs for the first time since 2013 and landed the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference. Their success can be credited to coach Tom Thibodeau’s arrival, along with Julius Randle’s stellar performances along with them acquiring Derrick Rose mid-season.

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The veteran player became a mentor to the young players on the team. The patience and finishing he brings to the game can only come from the 11-year experience that he has in the league. Undoubtedly, he was a stepping stone in how far the Knicks came this season.

May 28, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) shoots the ball over New York Knicks guard Derrick Rose (4) in the first quarter during game three in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Although they did not get past the first round against the Atlanta Hawks, the support the Knicks fans got was tremendous. It was something that was never seen before. The Knicks’ run this year begs the question – if Rose stays longer, how much further can the Knicks go?

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Yashima Bhatia

1189 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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